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Werd launches $1.99 retro gaming range

US publisher challenges existing price points with "truly mass market" label

Alabama-based publisher and developer Werd Interactive has announced the launch of a new entry-level range of casual games, each of which will be sold through to users for $1.99.

Called Neo Retro, the range will be launching with four titles - puzzle title Flipper Flip, action game Meteor Storm and classic games Neo Blackjack and Neo Poker - which are available directly from Werd's website.

The company describes the launch of the low-priced titles as creating a new entry-level price point for mobile games, and hopes to attract consumers who have older phone handsets or aren't prepared to spend $5 to $10 each on games.

"There's a lot of talk within the industry about making mobile gaming truly mass market, but nobody seems to be doing anything about it," argued Werd managing director Randy Shepherd.

"The same old genres, the same tired gameplay and the usual poor excuses for licensed titles are all flooding out, with no support, no recognition of older handsets and no real reason for non-gamers to even bother with them. What we're doing is trying to bypass this apathy and fuzzy thinking and create a new entry point for every mobile phone owner."

The company describes its four launch titles as being "simple, accessible and fun", with all the titles supporting a wide range of handsets from manufacturers including Nokia, Motorola, SonyEricsson, LG, Samsung and Sanyo.

"Yeah our games are cheap, but they're simple, fast, fun and are not going to intimidate users," Shepherd explained. "Neo Retro isn't about pushing back the boundaries of gaming, it's about creating a whole new market. If we're serious about making mobile a truly universal platform for gaming, we're going to have to get a hell of a lot more players involved. That's what Neo Retro is all about. It's a couple of bucks. It's simple and fun. Tell your friends."

Further games are expected to launch on the Neo Retro label in the coming weeks, including action title Neo Feeding Frenzy, puzzle title Neo Tiles and Breakout style title Neo Shatter Block. Werd also publishes a range of social games, under the Project Lifestyle label.

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